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Queen's Games role delighted royals

Princes William and Harry cried out "Go Granny!" as they cheered the Queen when she "jumped" out of a helicopter in the biggest surprise of the Olympic opening ceremony, Lord Coe has revealed.

The Queen took on her first acting role in secret as she was accompanied by James Bond to the ceremony from Buckingham Palace.

London 2012 chairman Lord Coe admitted he was "speechless" and just a little nervous about the idea of hurling the Queen out of the helicopter during the £27 million curtain-raiser.

A pre-recorded film was played during the ceremony showing her quirky and unique arrival but she had a double for the jump.

It was even a secret from the Prince of Wales, Prince Harry and Prince William who sat astonished among the capacity crowd at the Olympic Stadium, Lord Coe revealed.

"None of them knew about the Queen's involvement, nor that the film even existed," he told The Times, which is serialising his autobiography.

"So when the sequence began, with the corgis racing up what were obviously very familiar stairs, Prince Charles looked at me and began laughing rather nervously, wondering where on earth this was going.

"And when the film cut to the shot of the royal back, he had exactly the same reaction as everyone else, which was to assume it was the lady who does the impersonations.

"But the moment she turned around, and everyone realised 'My God! It really is the Queen!' he began roaring with laughter. As for his sons, they were beside themselves. As she started her descent two voices shouted out in unison behind me, 'Go Granny!'"

Lord Coe had loved the idea, dreamt up by opening ceremony artistic director and Oscar winner Danny Boyle, as it showed the world Britain's eccentricity, daring and creativity.

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